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December 10. 2013 12:30AM

Santa Fund: Toddler dreams of a tricycle

MANCHESTER — Heidi and Harry are two Manchester parents struggling to make ends meet on fast-food restaurant salaries.

By the time they pay their bills and day care expenses, there isn't much left.With the holidays approaching, they worry about how to make sure there will be something under the tree for their 2-year-old boy on Christmas morning. That's why they turned to the New Hampshire Union Leader Santa Fund for the Salvation Army.

"I sat down with my husband, and we talked and we tried to see what our budget would be. It would be hard for us to give him a Christmas gift," Heidi said.

"I want to make sure he has what he needs for Christmas," she says.

She has her eyes set on buying clothes for the toddler, who is outgrowing outfits almost as soon as she buys them. But if dreams could come true, she would love to get the boy the tricycle he has his eyes set on.

"He tries to ride them in the stores," she said. "He sees them and he says, 'Mommy, come on.'"

"I have to take him off, knowing that I don't have the money for it," Heidi adds.

As the boy gets older and is more aware of Christmas, she said, it's more of a challenge to get by with less.

"Because he is at a different age and not a baby anymore, it's getting harder," she said.


Santa Fund donations may be made by sending a check to the Union Leader Santa Fund, in care of the New Hampshire Union Leader, P.O. Box 9555, Manchester 03108; or by placing a donation in the Santa Fund box in the lobby of the newspaper, at 100 William Loeb Drive, Manchester, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Donations can also be made online at www.unionleader.com/santafund.

How to donate

Santa Fund donations can be made by completing the online form by clicking "Donate" below or send a check to:

c/o New Hampshire Union Leader
P.O. Box 9555
Manchester, NH 03108

You can also drop off the printed form in our newspaper and a donation in the Santa Fund box at the Union Leader, 100 William Loeb Drive in Manchester from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Friday. We will also have a donation drop box at the Intown Manchester Holiday Market on Thursday, November 29 and every Thursday in December.

Share a holiday greeting

With your donation, the Union Leader will publish a short holiday message in the newspaper. Just write it up exactly as you would have it appear, printing clearly, and mail it along with your donation. If you prefer to donate online, follow the link on the page following the transaction to submit a Christmas message.

For more information, please contact Shannon Sullivan, Union Leader Community Relations Manager, at (603) 206-7833 or ssullivan@unionleader.com

The Union Leader Santa Fund is a community tradition that has supported the Salvation Army for more than 50 years. The Santa Fund was first established at the Post Office Fruit in Manchester after a chance 1959 meeting between the Salvation Army major and the then-editor of the Union Leader.

In its first year, the Santa Fund brought in $1,000 to support the Salvation Armys Christmas effort. Since then, the Santa Fund has raised nearly $6.8 million, thanks to the generosity of the community and local businesses. Santa Fund dollars continue to provide warm clothing, meals and toys during the holidays, as well as support Kids Caf, summer camps and other critical programs throughout the year. Last year's drive brought in over $240,000 thanks to the generosity of local businesses and residents, bringing the lifetime total to nearly $6.8 million.

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